Shredded Paper

Through trial and error, the Tri-County Recycling Facility (owned by Brown, Outagamie and Winnebago County) has found that even if bagged, shredded paper tends to spill out and stick to sorting equipment and other recyclables and cannot be effectively recovered for recycling.  In response to these issues, Tri-County Recycling has removed shredded paper from its "acceptable items" list.  Unfortunately, shredded paper is no longer recyclable in our household carts or commercial recycling dumpsters. 

 

For households, we recommend:

  1. Reduce the amount of confidential documents that are coming into your home.  Sign up for e-billing, online statements and emailed receipts.

  2. Shred only the documents or portions of documents that are confidential.  For instance, if you shred mail because it has your name and address on it, rip out and shred the portion with that information and recycle the rest of the document.

  3. Take confidential documents to a shred event - typically sponsored by local financial institutions and held once or twice a year.

  4. Take confidential documents to a local office store or shipping store that offers paper shredding as a service.

  5. If you shred your own documents, the shredded material can be composted or used as animal bedding – keep any plastic materials out of it.

  6. As a last resort, household sourced shredded paper may be bagged and landfilled.  DO NOT put this in your recycling bin.

 

For workplaces, we recommend:

  1. Reduce the amount of documents that are printed.

  2. Shred only the documents or portions of documents that are confidential.   Work with a recycling service that offers drop-off or pick-up options.  DO NOT put this in your recycling dumpster.

  3. Hire a paper shredding service to shred and recycle large amounts of confidential documents.

 

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